I recently began my own version of a Puja ritual each morning. Puja essentially, is a ritual of daily devotion, offering food, drink and prayers to a deity, historically stemming from the Hindu and Buddhist traditions.
I was in a class recently, performing this ritual where, we, ourselves were our own deity, offering these things to the divine within each of us. Some may say this is not the tradition, some may have, and are entitled to their own beliefs of what the divine is, or which deity to praise, be it God, Allah, Jehovah, Haile Selassie, Buddha, etc. There are varying ways that symbols are used to create rituals that can be very healing, regardless of your spiritual background. It is my true belief that we are all spiritual beings, seeking the same thing, through different sources. No better, no worse, just...different. As I began this ritual, using actual food as my symbol for nourishment, I meditated with each bite, truly feeling myself being of the earth, as I ate fruits and vegetables that came from the earth. I am not Vegan, but in that moment, I truly had a depth of understanding that I am what I eat, and if I want to nourish myself as much as I can, how important it is to mindfully eat, understanding where my food is coming from.
This lead my thoughts into emotional eating. It makes sense that emotional eating usually contains food that is anything but nourishing. When we get sad, angry, depressed, or don't feel good about who we are, we eat chips, chocolate, soda, super size, extra sauce on the side, sub fries for salad, extra cheese, extra, extra, extra. This matches perhaps, not always, but much of the time, how we feel about ourselves in that moment. So we are literally feeding our emotions. If we are eating, coming from a place of value for ourselves, we eat much differently, and more often then not, our eating patterns shift. This life isn't about us, it is about serving, supporting and nurturing one another in this life. If we aren't able to honor and nourish ourselves as our own deity if you will, how are we able to truly do that for others? How are we able to show up in the healthiest of ways for this life, and the community that we are all apart of, each one, playing a significant role.
We are all, exactly where we are supposed to be, learning and growing, discovering and transcending in our own, unique way. I only desire to offer differed perspectives, as I grow and learn on this journey myself. - With Love, Katie